Retail behemoths Walmart and Amazon are known for their low prices, convenience and wide product selection. Both offer attractive credit cards that reward brand loyalty.
With two-day shipping, a popular streaming service, grocery delivery and competitive variety and pricing, Amazon has become synonymous with online shopping. The Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card entices Amazon Prime members with perks like rewards points, a valuable welcome bonus and exclusive cardholder discounts.
Walmart, which has long been the go-to, big-box, brick-and-mortar retailer with incredibly low prices, is competing with Amazon by giving Walmart.com shoppers free two-day shipping with no membership needed. The Capital One Walmart Rewards Card makes shopping with Walmart.com even sweeter by offering 5 percent back on online purchases.
We’re putting the Amazon Prime Rewards card and Capital One Walmart Rewards card to the test to help you determine which one you should have in your wallet.
Comparison: Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card vs. Capital One Walmart Rewards Card
As with other retail cards, both the Amazon Prime Rewards and Walmart Rewards cards offer lucrative rewards for cardmembers who are loyal to their brands.
With the Amazon Prime Rewards card, Prime members earn unlimited 5 percent rewards at Amazon.com, Amazon stores and at Whole Foods Market, in addition to 1 percent and 2 percent rewards categories. The Walmart Rewards card offers an equally competitive 5 percent back, but only at Walmart.com. Walmart store purchases earn points at a rate of 2 percent, while other purchases earn 1 percent or 2 percent back.
When it comes to welcome bonuses, these cards reward new cardholders in different ways. Amazon Prime Rewards cardholders instantly receive a $150 Amazon gift card, while those with the Walmart Rewards card enjoy a 5 percent back rate on in-store Walmart purchases for the first year, which is a 3 percent increase from the usual rewards rate for this category.
While neither card has an annual fee or introductory APR, the Amazon Prime Rewards card has a lower regular APR range.
|Cards||Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card||Capital One Walmart Rewards Card|
|Welcome bonus||$150 Amazon Gift Card||5% back at Walmart for the first 12 months|
|Rewards rate||1% to 5% back||1% to 5% back|
|Regular APR||14.24% to 22.24% (Variable)||17.99% to 26.99% (Variable)|
|Annual fee||$0 ($119 Amazon Prime subscription required)||$0|
Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card vs. Capital One Walmart Rewards Card highlights
Let’s take a closer look at how these two retail cards compare when it comes to welcome bonuses, rewards rates, annual fees and foreign transaction fees.
Welcome bonus winner: Capital One Walmart Rewards Card
New Amazon Prime Rewards Visa cardholders receive a $150 Amazon Gift Card instantly, upon approval. That’s a useful gift card, as it can be used on any of the millions of products found on Amazon. However, in order to take advantage of the 5 percent back rewards rate, you’ll need to pay $119 annually to become an Amazon Prime member. After membership fees, you essentially profit $31 from that gift card, which makes the bonus seem like less of a good deal.
The Capital One Walmart Rewards card offers a welcome bonus of an increase to 5 percent back on purchases made at Walmart stores with the Walmart Pay app for the first 12 months. After 12 months, the rewards rate for purchases made in Walmart stores drops down to 2 percent. (Note that Walmart.com purchases always earn 5 percent back.)
While the Walmart Rewards’ welcome offer sounds less exciting than Amazon’s, it has the potential to be more rewarding since you don’t have to pay a membership fee to unlock that 5 percent rewards tier. After spending just $620 at Walmart, you’ll surpass the $31 net profit you’d earn with Amazon’s welcome offer, and there’s no cap on the Capital One Walmart Rewards’ boosted 5 percent earnings for the first year.
Rewards rate winner: Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card
The Amazon Prime Rewards card earns unlimited 5 percent rewards on Amazon.com, Amazon store and Whole Foods Market purchases, 2 percent at restaurants, gas stations and drugstores and 1 percent back on all other purchases. This card also comes with “Prime Card Bonus” offers of up to 25 percent cash back on select Prime purchases.
The Capital One Walmart Rewards card earns 5 percent rewards at Walmart.com, including on pickup and delivery purchases, 2 percent back on purchases made at Walmart stores, at restaurants and on travel and 1 percent back on all other purchases.
Other retail cards typically give you the highest rewards rate on purchases at their stores—whether on premises or online—so the fact that 5 percent back in Walmart stores is only a limited-time welcome offer is disappointing. Plus, in order to benefit from the welcome offer rewards rate, you need to use the Walmart Pay app to make purchases in the store. If you accidentally reach for your credit card instead of paying with the app in the store, you’ll only earn 2 percent back at Walmart stores during the introductory 12-month period.
It’s also important to note these cards have slightly different categories for their 2 percent rewards tiers. The Amazon Prime Rewards gives 2 percent back on drugstore, gas station and restaurant purchases, while the Walmart Rewards card gives 2 percent back on Walmart store, restaurant and travel purchases.
While we’ve determined the Amazon Prime Rewards has objectively better rewards rates, the Capital One Walmart Rewards card may be better for you if you shop at Walmart.com over Walmart stores and Amazon.com.
Annual fee winner: Capital One Walmart Rewards Card
Both the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card and the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card offer the same attractive $0 annual fee, which means you don’t have to worry about making sure your rewards outweigh card costs.
However, although the Amazon Prime Rewards doesn’t have a fee, you still need to spend $119 on an annual Amazon Prime membership to earn 5 percent back on Amazon purchases. Because you essentially have to pay to unlock the Amazon Prime Rewards’ highest rewards tier, the Walmart Rewards card is the winner when it comes to annual fees.
Foreign transaction fee winner: Tie
Neither card charges foreign transaction fees, making either a good choice when traveling abroad or making online purchases from ecommerce shops based abroad.
If you don’t already have a separate travel card in your wallet, the Walmart Rewards card is a good choice for booking travel and making purchases abroad due to its 2 percent travel rewards rate and lack of foreign transaction fees.
Which card earns the most?
Both the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card and Capital One Walmart Rewards Card offer 5 percent, 2 percent and 1 percent back categories with similar structures. That means card earnings will depend on your spending habits and shopping preferences (for example, Amazon.com versus Walmart.com, and online versus in-person shopping).
Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card vs. Capital One Walmart Rewards Card spending example
Let’s say in one year, you spend $2,000 on online purchases, $8,000 in groceries, $500 at drugstores, $500 on travel and $1,000 on miscellaneous purchases that don’t fit into any other spending category.
If you had the Amazon Prime Rewards card, you’d earn $100 back on online purchases made through Amazon.com, $400 on groceries from Whole Foods, $10 at drugstores, $5 on travel and $10 on miscellaneous purchases, for a grand total of $525 back.
With the Capital One Walmart Rewards card, you’d earn $100 back on online purchases made through Walmart.com, $400 on groceries bought at Walmart stores via Walmart Pay within the first 12 months, $5 at drugstores, $10 on travel and $10 on miscellaneous purchases, for a grand total of $525 back. After the welcome bonus has expired, this scenario would earn you $285 each subsequent year (as the rate drops down to 2 percent for in-store purchases).
In this scenario, both cards would earn you the same rewards within the first 12-month introductory period. In your second year of card membership, the Amazon Prime Rewards card would be more rewarding.
Why should you get the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card?
Simply put, if you already have an Amazon Prime membership and frequently shop with Amazon, you’ll probably want to have the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card in your wallet. The 5 percent back on Amazon.com, Amazon store and Whole Foods purchases make this card very enticing.
Amazon Prime Rewards cardholders benefit from Visa Signature perks, which include access to the Visa Signature Concierge Service and room upgrades, complimentary Wi-Fi, a food and beverage credit, complimentary breakfast and late check-out at any of the 900 establishments in the Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection.
Cardmembers also enjoy traveler, roadside and consumer protections that come in handy overseas, on the road and at home.
The Amazon Prime Rewards card gives you points instead of cash back. Each point is worth one cent, which means you’ll earn $1 in rewards for every $20 you spend at Amazon or Whole Foods, every $50 you spend at gas stations, restaurants or drugstores or every $100 spent on other purchases.
There are a number of ways to redeem points, including:
- Swapping them for a cash deposit into an eligible checking or savings account
- Redeeming a credit on your account
- Receiving Amazon.com credit
- Booking travel through Chase
- Trading them in for gift cards
Recommended credit score
You need good to excellent credit to qualify for the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card, which means you’ll need a FICO score between 670 and 850.
Why should you get the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card?
If you shop at Walmart frequently, then getting the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card is a no-brainer. With a higher rewards rate when you shop at Walmart.com, this card encourages you to shop online instead of at Walmart stores.
When you’re approved for this card, you’ll receive an instant card number so you can begin using it right away. There’s no need to wait for the card to arrive in the mail.
Capital One provides additional perks, like an app-activated card lock feature to protect you if your card is ever lost or stolen, $0 fraud liability and no penalty APR.
The Walmart Rewards card offers multiple ways to redeem your points, which never expire. As with the Amazon Prime Rewards card, one point is worth one cent with Walmart’s card, which means you’ll need to rack up 100 points to earn $1 in rewards—that’s $20 spent on Walmart.com purchases, $50 at Walmart stores, restaurants or on travel or $100 on other purchases.
You can redeem points:
- For cash, in the form of a check or a statement credit
- To cover a purchase
- For gift cards from Walmart and other stores
- For travel via Capital One Travel
Recommended credit score
In order to qualify for the Capital One Walmart Rewards card, you’ll need good to excellent credit, which typically falls in the 670 to 850 FICO score range.
The bottom line
The Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature card and the Capital One Walmart Rewards card are attractive branded cards from the biggest name in retail. They offer similar tiers for points collection and, as with other retail cards, reward cardmembers for their loyalty.
Since neither card has an annual fee and both retailers carry a staggering number of products, they’re both great options for retail cards. The best card for you depends on where you shop the most and which card will deliver the most value for your spending habits and lifestyle.